American Shaun White cemented his legacy as the most successful snowboarder of all time as he delivered a stunning routine under massive pressure on the final run of a gripping halfpipe final on Wednesday to win his third Winter Olympic gold and a landmark 100th for his country. White won his first X game medal at age 16, Kim won hers at age 14.
But James' score was quickly eclipsed by White, who was the next rider to drop. (She went on to become the most decorated female swimmer in American history.) Ledecky was nearly 100 days younger than Lipinski when she won her gold medal.
The youngest American athlete to win a gold medal in a Winter Olympics was figure skater Tara Lipinski, who was 15 years (and 255 days) old when she won in 1988 in Nagano. White did the back-to-back 1440s in his second run - the first time he had ever done so in a competition - but didn't land the second one cleanly and lost speed. I had this insane injury in New Zealand (in October) where I busted my face open.
Women's soccer player Kelly O'Hara, a World Cup and Olympic victor was clearly moved by White's celebratory tears.
He came close to repeating the feat on the biggest stage of them all - scoring 97.75 on his third run to clinch the gold over Ayumu Hirano of Japan.
"I'm proud of myself".
Team USA entered the PyeongChang Olympics with 96 gold medals in winter competition.
That forced White to up the ante.
"He ripped his face in half, more or less, and you can still see the scars", the Associated Press quoted White's coach, JJ Thomas, as saying.
White said it had been an agonising wait for his score from the judges to come through, as he pipped Hirano to the title to make United States history. Red Gerard and Jamie Anderson won the men's and women's slopestyle contests, and Chloe Kim won the women's halfpipe event.
"I knew I had it in me to do it", said White.